Author Topic: Fermentation Temperature Control  (Read 7867 times)

Offline micsager

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2013, 12:13:11 PM »
No way to do that.  Or at least I don't know.  Buckets are at different stages of fermentation. 

Do you have any ideas?  I know that owuld be better. 

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2013, 12:18:25 PM »
It's probably way over complicated but I have considered a zoned temp controlled area accomplished by putting 'gates' or dividers in at various points each with it's own temp controller which would actually trigger a little servo to open or close a vent and/or turn on a ventilator fan.

So your zones would go from;

coldest=closest to cooling or farthest from heating
to
warmest=closest to heating or farthest from cooling.

just a thought I had.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2013, 12:20:15 PM »
Slap a fermometer on each bucket?  That way you'll know the temp of each one.

My concern is that 70 is high to turn the AC on, the beer could be much hotter.  The heat of fermentation will take a long time to warm up a room that size, so the beer could be at 75 while the room is at 65.  I would probably set the heater to click on at 62 and the AC at 65.  Play with it though, and you'll figure out a sweet spot.

Allow space between the new buckets to let heat dissipate, and you can cluster the older ones together since they won't be as active.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline micsager

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2013, 12:24:31 PM »
Thanks for the advice guys. 


Offline jeffy

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2013, 01:12:37 PM »
It's probably way over complicated but I have considered a zoned temp controlled area accomplished by putting 'gates' or dividers in at various points each with it's own temp controller which would actually trigger a little servo to open or close a vent and/or turn on a ventilator fan.

So your zones would go from;

coldest=closest to cooling or farthest from heating
to
warmest=closest to heating or farthest from cooling.

just a thought I had.

There's a small brewery in St. Pete that does just this.  The cool room has two areas, one for lagers close to the A/C unit and another room closer to the "out" door for ales.  They are separated by one of those clear, thick plastic curtains.
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Offline majorvices

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Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #20 on: May 24, 2013, 07:09:05 AM »
So, back to my earlier advice. The easiest way to have exact temp control is to make the room cold and use a digital johnson or ranco temp controller set to heat and wrap each fermentor with heat wrap and use a thermowell. In my cold room, set at ambient 34 degrees, I can ferment a lager at 50 or a saison at 80. Works like a charm. I used to ferment 3 bbl plastic conicals this way.
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Offline micsager

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #21 on: May 24, 2013, 09:40:34 AM »
So, back to my earlier advice. The easiest way to have exact temp control is to make the room cold and use a digital johnson or ranco temp controller set to heat and wrap each fermentor with heat wrap and use a thermowell. In my cold room, set at ambient 34 degrees, I can ferment a lager at 50 or a saison at 80. Works like a charm. I used to ferment 3 bbl plastic conicals this way.

That sounds like a good plan, but a bit more complicated than I want to do.  We now have 16 buckets fermenting in there, and a wrap around each one would be hard to manage.  I did get a bunch of those stick on thermometers that Tom mentioned, and before I left for work this morning, all 16 were in the 64-68 degree range.  I'm happy with that.  The 64 degree ones were all on the lower shelves.  I think I'll get a small wall mount fan, just to move the air around a bit. 

So far, this little room is working out nicely. 

 

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Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #22 on: May 24, 2013, 10:30:21 AM »
I actually did a wrap around 2 at a time. In fact, I put them in a rubber made with some insulation and controlled two at a time that way. I guess, for me, proper temp control is paramount.
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Offline micsager

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #23 on: May 30, 2013, 08:22:15 AM »
Slap a fermometer on each bucket?  That way you'll know the temp of each one.

My concern is that 70 is high to turn the AC on, the beer could be much hotter.  The heat of fermentation will take a long time to warm up a room that size, so the beer could be at 75 while the room is at 65.  I would probably set the heater to click on at 62 and the AC at 65.  Play with it though, and you'll figure out a sweet spot.

Allow space between the new buckets to let heat dissipate, and you can cluster the older ones together since they won't be as active.

How accurate are those things.  I bought a bunch and put them on the buckets.  All are between 66-68, so that seems OK, but my heater is set 70, and the AC is set at 75.  (not that it will get that hot, LOL)

I put a little fan in there just to keep the air moving.  If those sticker thermometers are any good, I think I've figured the sweet spot.  At least until the weather changes signficantly. 

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #24 on: May 30, 2013, 08:43:49 AM »
As long as they're below the beer level in the bucket they'll be within a degree or so.
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Offline newrocset

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #25 on: June 01, 2013, 09:03:27 PM »
Help me clear the mystery on the stickies.
Which temp do I go with, since the color change on the sticker seems to indicate 3 temps.  I typically go with the highest reading assuming that this is the temp in the center of my fermenter where the most activity is presumably occuring.
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Offline micsager

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Re: Fermentation Temperature Control
« Reply #26 on: June 04, 2013, 07:49:57 AM »
Help me clear the mystery on the stickies.
Which temp do I go with, since the color change on the sticker seems to indicate 3 temps.  I typically go with the highest reading assuming that this is the temp in the center of my fermenter where the most activity is presumably occuring.

From the manufacturer:

Reading the temperature is straight forward.  If one crystal is highlighted in green, it is that temperature.  If two adjoining crystals are highlighted in blue and tan, it is the temperature in between.

http://tkachenterprises.com/Products.html